The Hues of a Kitchen
The Hues of a Kitchen
October 16, 2023
Colour expert Dr. Hildegard Kalthegener expects to see a change in colour uniformity that will be filled by other shades that permit new, unexpected combinations
A kitchen today can be colourful, keeping with the mood of chirpiness needed in the space where it exists- whether a home or a thriving restaurant. In commercial spaces like restaurants' kitchens, the new thinking goes beyond the staid white, cream or grey. The idea today is to make the kitchen a happy workplace that is vibrant and not underplayed and boring like the hospital room of yore.
In current times and in the latter day sensibility, first indications reveal designers ‘preferences for colours that will immerse interiors in a new light in the near future. With accents ranging from watermelon through flamingo and golden yellow through sand, the coming season promises vibrantly coloured impressions.
Colours Unlimited by Trends
Anyone looking for the next trend colour already has it wrong, because no colour ever stands alone. It always exists within the context of other colours (new and pre-existing) and materials. Now more than ever, there is likely to be a shift in the range of dark tones, among other changes.
The colour consultant primarily assesses which colour shades will remain relevant. Because blue, already in frequent use, is a cooler colour, it combines well with warm wood tones. Warm-toned wood has always been important in the furniture world, and it will stay that way. But the ’coffee wave’ of recent years has run through every possible shade of brown from cappuccino to latte macchiato, which includes all colours between chocolate and coffee. One can expect a clear shift there.
Dark green may establish itself as a new hue that, from pine through greenish black, brings a warmer alternative into play and opens the door for entirely new colour harmonies.
Portents of Coming Influences
In order to provide spaces with depth and furniture with expression, warm brown, which has been dominant for so long, will gradually be replaced by darker and cooler blue tones and by dark grey, which will continue to be well represented in nuances from slate through graphite and asphalt through concrete.
Another option for an expressive background is black, which was already going strong internationally as a trend colour. Dark green may establish itself as a new hue that, from pine through greenish black, brings a warmer alternative into play and opens the door for entirely new colour harmonies.
An ambience of harmonious colours requires an even balance between bright and chromatic, warm and cold, neutral nuances and accent hues.
Dark colours that will continue to be used over large surfaces need brightening contrasts. We’ve already had yellowish green colours like lime and lemongrass for ten years now. These colours were often combined with tones from the red spectrum, like fuchsia. Now they seem too commercial, especially for discerning tastes. These tones and colour combinations are currently moving more towards yellow, which is the perfect contrast to dark grey.
Oak will remain as a wood colour at the middle of the spectrum, frequently also appearing in bleached tones. Photo Courtesy: Kham Consultants
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Sunny Side Up
Not all yellows are alike. The yellow palette of the coming season ranges from a bright interpretation of ochre – a warm, sunny sand yellow that is expected to become very popular – to bold lemon and limelight.
Most colour consultants and keen designers see particularly great potential in the nuances of ochre and gold. This potential is reflected in the rediscovery of brass as a trend material: it is already appearing in many fixtures and equipment as an alternative to copper, which has virtually overrun the furniture world in the past three years and will remain relevant in the form of a rusty colour variant. At design expos, both metals and metal tones are more than likely being on show at the same time.
The current sand yellow makes clear how strongly the impact of colours is influenced by the tones and materials that accompany them. Set against black, sand yellow appears almost pastel; against white, it seems vibrant and bold. On a sheet of white paper, the sunny ochre has a strong impact, whilst it has a delicate, organically brightening effect on oak shades. Although ochre is a rather traditional colour – one of the oldest pigments to be used in human history – it is also well-suited to modern living environments and can be used to provide accents or to cover large surfaces.